<%-- Page Title--%> Dhaka Diary <%-- End Page Title--%>

<%-- Volume Number --%> Vol 1 Num 112 <%-- End Volume Number --%>

July 4 , 2003

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Man-made rivers

I was on my way towards Gulshan circle-2 on a rickshaw. I noticed that there was a small jam ahead of me as most of the cars and CNGs were moving on the rickshaw's side of the road. The whole right side, (the faster lane), was empty. As I got closer, I saw that there was water everywhere on that side and hence, the cars were avoiding the small river that had taken form in order to prevent their engines from stalling. As I got closer to the source of the water, I saw this huge pump pumping dirty water out from a man-hole. There were about five people, all of them labourers of some sort, keenly observing the gaping hole in the road. They were cleaning the line but in doing so, they were making a pool that was fast taking over the road. By then, a big jam had taken form and I could hear honking and swearing all around. It is the common practice of the Dhaka-ites that while fixing something, they always end up creating a mess.
IHK, Gulshan 2

Banks give them too!

When I buy something, I always fail to check the change the salesmen return to me. As a result I end up having a lot of 'chera taka' (torn notes) taped up carefully to fool people like me who are forgetful and always in a hurry. I have been warned repeatedly by my family members to check each note that I get as change from rickshaw pullers, CNG or cab wallahs as well as salesmen. But what I didn't realise is that I also have to be careful of getting chera taka from banks as well. Last week I got a Tk.500 note from one of the most well-known government banks taped so cleverly that it was hard to notice that there was anything wrong with it. I only found out when I went to buy something, and the salesman flatly refused to accept my torn notes. Of course I had to go back to the bank to change the notes, but the bank didn't want to believe that they had given me the faulty notes. This wasn't the first time I received money that was damaged. Yesterday, when I went to the bank to deposit a cheque, I saw a man arguing with the bank employee saying that he had received chera taka a few times from the bank. The employee refused to take responsibility for the accusation. He insisted that the man must have got it from somewhere else but was trying to shift the blame on the bank to tarnish its reputation. Well, I knew better so I corroborated the man's claim. Since two of the bank's clients had the same complaint, the employee grudgingly changed the note. I wanted to share my experience to caution the readers of this magazine to carefully examine the money they get from anyone, whether a salesman, a rickshaw puller or even a bank officer.

C-O-M-M-U-N-I-C-A-T-E !

The other day I was working on one of the shared computers in my office. As I was merrily typing away I felt like I was being watched--even worse, I had the strange suspicion that someone was breathing down my neck! I turned around only to see a sleazy, scary looking man standing right over me staring at me without speaking. I was momentarily at a loss for words because the look in his eyes was anything but friendly or cordial. In fact, he looked like he wanted to kill me! When I asked him if he was waiting for the computer he merely nodded slightly, still giving me death-looks. I cannot understand what the reason for this hostility was, but I am only to come to the conclusion that he was angry that a “lowly” woman dared to make him wait or maybe he was just very possessive about the computer. Either way, there is no excuse for his attitude. He had probably never had to speak to a woman properly in his life, and therefore did not feel the need to be polite. People, if you don't know how to communicate with members of the opposite sex PROPERLY, please don't bother getting jobs and subjecting the rest of us to your stupidity. Stay at home and spare us all, because women in Dhaka are definitely very much “in”
the work force now, and we are not going anywhere!


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